Sunderland landmarks lit up for anti-racism message in the week that England players faced abuse in Bulgaria

Former Sunderland AFC captain Gary Bennett is asking the city to support Show Racism the Red Card’s awareness day after events in Bulgaria.

Friday, 18th October 2019, 10:22 am

Anti-racism charity Show Racism The Red Card has said its annual awareness day is as even more important in the week that English players were subjected to racist chanting in Bulgaria.

Former Sunderland AFC caption Gary Bennett said: “Events in Bulgaria this week, with the racist abuse of English players, helped highlight the problem, and the need for us all to get together to do something about it.

“Education and awareness are part of that continual process, and I hope everyone will support Wear Red Day.”

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Show Racism The Red Card project. From left Sgt Wayne Wright, Sunderland Council Victoria Moseley, former Sunderland legend and ambassador Gary Bennett, Sunderland Deputy Leader Coun Michael Mordey, Sunderland College's Ruth Magnes and PC Dan McGwinn
Show Racism The Red Card project. From left Sgt Wayne Wright, Sunderland Council Victoria Moseley, former Sunderland legend and ambassador Gary Bennett, Sunderland Deputy Leader Coun Michael Mordey, Sunderland College's Ruth Magnes and PC Dan McGwinn

Today, Friday, October 18, is the fifth annual Wear Red Day, a national day of action organised by the ‘Show Racism the Red Card’ campaign, with everyone invited to wear red for the day and donate a £1 to help raise funds for anti-racism education and activities.

In a civic show of support, city landmarks including the Northern Spire, Keel Square, Fulwell Mill, Cliffe Park Lighthouse and Penshaw Monument will all be lit up in red, along with the Beacon of Light.Northumbria Police, working with Sunderland City Council, have trained specialist volunteer Hate Crime Champions, who will be a key point of contact for those who are either victims of hate crime, or want to know more about the issue.

Sunderland City Council deputy leader Coun Michael Mordey is Chair of the Safer Sunderland Partnership, he said: "Sunderland's strength is our amazing community spirit, and we will do everything we can to maintain and promote that sense of cohesion and togetherness. "Part of this continual process is recognising issues when they arise, and working together to do something about them which obviously includes tackling any increase in racist behaviour and attitudes.”Chief Inspector Nicola Wearing, lead for hate crime in Sunderland and South Tyneside, added: “Hate crime is something we believe has sadly been under-reported for some time, but across Northumbria we have worked extremely hard to give victims the confidence to come forward.”